EB-5 Visas Explained

passportEB-5 Immigration Assistance

This is rather a glib title for what often is a long, complex process.

We make every effort to help our foreign clients find a business investment suitable for their immigration and personal needs. New Mexico’s multicultural milieu and bustling immigrant populations make it an attractive choice for the foreign investor. Every year, visitors from Canada, Germany, the U.K, Israel and elsewhere make Santa Fe one of their top North American destinations. When a visitor decides to live here, they sometimes review the option of an Immigrant Investor Visa, more commonly known as an EB-5 Visa.

Congress created the Immigrant Investor Program  in 1990 to stimulate the U.S. economy through job creation and capital investment by foreign investors. The program provides foreign investors with a green card in exchange for investing a minimum of $1 million U.S. dollars in a new or distressed U.S business. The condition is that the business venture has to generate a minimum of 10 full-time U.S. jobs for Americans, excluding the investor or the investor’s family members.

According to a peer-reviewed study released by The Association to Invest in the USA, each year spending associated with EB-5 investors supports over 16,000 U.S. jobs each year, contributes $1.3 billion to U.S. gross domestic product (GDP), and investor spending brings an additional $713 million in federal tax revenue and $109 million in state and local tax revenue.

Despite these promising numbers, it is not necessarily an easy or quick process. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the federal agency that administers this program, currently reports that the average time to process an I-526 Application (form available at  I-526 Forms)  is approximately 13 months.  Completing and submitting  this application represents an important step in the EB-5 approval process, but it only happens after you have identified appropriate projects and completed a sustainability evaluation.

We currently have several businesses that may be good selections for this initial stage. If you would like to learn more about their suitability for your investment and immigration needs, we encourage you to have your EB-5 attorney, investment consultant or other advisor contact us for details on these available businesses.

For additional resources on this program, you can review the information provided at U.S. State Department Immigrant Investor Visas, The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s EB-5 Immigrant Investor. A good source for current news is EB-5 Investor’s Magazine.